The Future of U.S. Climate Policy

The Future of U.S. Climate Policy



The author begins this chapter with a description of then-current (2007-2008) U. S. climate policy as it related to international relations and negotiations in the wake of the Bush Administration’s rejection of the Kyoto Protocol. Acknowledging that future U.S. negotiating positions would depend significantly on the outcome of the 2008 presidential election, he briefly reviews the platforms of the leading U.S. presidential candidates before turning to federal domestic policy. Summarizing the Bush initiatives to tie greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to economic output and to reduce emissions by voluntary measures, he also discusses the first U.S. Supreme Court case to address climate change, Massachusetts v. EPA (549 U.S. 497, 2007), wherein the high court chided the EPA for ignoring its statutory obligation to execute the Clean Air Act, while refusing to take a stand on whether greenhouse gases cause or contribute to climate change. The author reviews legislation that was then making its way through the 110th Congress, such as Senator Waxman’s Safe Climate Act, and goes on to analyze activities at the sub-national level that collectively had a major impact on U.S. climate policy. The author concludes the chapter by identifying some of the implications of future U.S. climate policy, expected to be more robust post-Bush, for Canada and Canadian climate policy.



Publication Date


Book Title

A Globally Integrated Climate Policy for Canada


University of Toronto Press


U.S. climate policy, Greenhouse gas emissions, Clean Air Act, Massachusetts v. EPA, George W. Bush presidential administration


Environmental Law | Law

The Future of U.S. Climate Policy